A new study finding proves that artificially sweetened drinks aren't a healthier option after all and are at an increased risk of heart issues.
This study results from the French NutriNet-Santé study involving 104,000 participants and their dietary records, completed every six months.
The author wrote in the study, "Compared to non-consumers, both higher consumers of sugary drinks and artificially sweetened beverages had higher risks of first incident cardiovascular disease, after taking into account a wide range of confounding factors."
The conditions were severe, including strokes and heart attacks. After dropping the first three years of a decades-worth of follow-up data to remove biases, researchers found that nearly 1,400 participants reported their first case of heart disease.
International Sweeteners Association (ISA) has questioned the study's findings in a letter claiming all approved low and no-calorie sweeteners' safety issues.
"At a time when obesity and non-communicable diseases including diabetes and dental diseases remain major global health challenges, and in light of current public health recommendations to reduce overall sugar intake, low/no-calorie sweeteners can help create healthier food environments," the letter stated, in part. "They provide a wide choice of sweet-tasting options with low or no calories, and thus can be a useful tool when used in place of sugar and as part of a balanced diet, in helping reduce overall sugar and calorie intake, as well as in managing blood glucose levels and in contributing to tooth demineralisation, which is one of the reasons for tooth decay."
Kate Patton, who was not involved in the study and is a registered dietitian with Cleveland Clinic's Center for Human Nutrition, told media that she recommends patients to buy fruit-infused water, among other choices, as a healthy alternative.